Crusca, Irene


One of the highlights of Irene Crusca’s career was her award of an Italian Government Scholarship, which allowed her the opportunity to pursue study in fine art at L’Accademia di Belle Arti di Brera, Milan.

Irene has held residencies at the Gasworks Community Arts Village and at Chisholm College, La Trobe University, Bundoora. Her work is represented in the Chisholm College art collection, La Trobe University and the Victoria University Art Collection. She was an Honorary Judge for the 2010 Fiona Myer and Myer Foundation Travelling Scholarships, awarded to Graduate Students, Visual Art, School of Creative Industries, Victoria University.

Irene has taught both theory and creative practice at a tertiary level at Photography Studies College, Southbank, and at the University of Melbourne. She has also taught within the larger community through the Gasworks Community Arts Village, Mulgrave Neighbourhood House, Clayton Arts Council, and Box Hill Tafe since 1989.

In 2014 Irene was a semi-finalist in the Doug Moran National Portrait Award, and a finalist in the Portia Geach Memorial Award in 2015.


“Due to my interest in the relationship between the space, the place and the figure, I prefer to paint full-size portraits which enable a greater descriptive and symbolic space around the subject. I welcome costume and any idiosyncratic objects or adornments which permit greater insight into the sitter’s character and emotions. My painting is influenced by my Italian background and nurtured by Italian opera. I employ the dramatic effects of restless brushstrokes and chiaroscuro in my work. My interest in the tensions of space and subjectivity merge and the portrait develops in unpredictable ways.”


2001-2003 University of Melbourne, School of Creative Arts, Carlton, Masters of Creative Arts by Research
2000 University of Melbourne, Victorian College of the Arts, Southbank. Postgraduate Diploma in Fine Art
1982-1984 Victoria College – Prahran Campus, Prahran, Bachelor of Art (Fine Art) degree, Major in Painting.


1987 Chisholm College Art Gallery, La Trobe University


2015 Finalist, Portia Geach Memorial Award Exhibition, S. H. Erwin Gallery, Observatory Hill,Sydney
2014 Semi-finalist in the Doug Moran National Portrait Award
2014 Open Studios Gala Exhibition, Melbourne Polytechnic, Prahran Campus, Prahran
2014 “Australians at Work” Victorian Art Society Galleries¸ Melbourne
2012 “Pursuit”, Group Exhibition, India Art Fair, New Delhi
2010 “Pursuit”, Group Exhibition, Melbourne Art Fair, Royal Exhibition Building, Carlton
2012 Book Launch Exhibition, Portrait Artists Australia, Arthouse Hotel, Sydney
2009 Victoria University Staff Show, Sunshine Campus, Victoria University
2008 Victoria University Staff Exhibition, Victoria University, Footscray Campus
2008 “The Art of Healing”, Portrait Artists Australia, Arthouse Hotel, Sydney
2000 VCA Montsalvat, 23-30 Oct
1997 Dairing Gallery, Richmond, 12-26 Aug
1992 The Malthouse Gallery, South Melbourne. 7-20 Dec
1988 Spoleto Fringe Festival. Gasworks Gallery, Albert Park. 3-11 Sep
1988 Gasworks’ Artists Exhibition, Gasworks Gallery, Albert Park. 12-13 June
1987 Part of Spoleto Fringe Festival. Fairfield Gallery, Fairfield.




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